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Are Two Really Better Than One?

Discussion in 'CPUs' started by Hesky82, 29 Jan 2006.

  1. Hesky82

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 8 Jan 2005

    Posts: 2,405

    Location: Worcestershire

    pretty basic question but being a typical pc user that just happens to like speedy systems what real world benefits would i see when switching to dual core? its still a real grey area for me, I'm more a hardware guy than software and all this multi threading and dual instances this and that makes sense but i cant really see how/if it can benefit me here and now, will anything from the os to the apps i use take advantage of both cores or would i still be in for a wait? I game a lot, surf a lot and do a dab of photo and video related stuff quite often.

    basically if part with my oc'ed 146 opty I would like a noticeable difference when I pop a 170 in and run a feasible oc, future proofing isnt a plus point for me. just cant get my head around 2 cpu's, i think its one of those things that when you try it it all makes sense :)



    Cheers
     
  2. Jimbo Mahoney

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 6,197

    Location: Belfast

    Yes.

    Sell the 146 to me ;)



    But seriously, I actually think going from a 3Ghz single core to a ~ 2.6 Ghz dual core would suck UNTIL stuff really takes advantage of dual processors.

    Wait 6 months - 1 year until games are properly multithreaded (I know SOME are now, before I get flamed, but very few!)
     
  3. Chris19

    Hitman

    Joined: 12 Dec 2005

    Posts: 570

    Gotta say it is a bugger at the moment with games not being multithreded yet again i did get an x2 to be futureproof
     
  4. Solouko

    Hitman

    Joined: 12 Aug 2005

    Posts: 598

    Location: North wales near Rhyl

    i think you'll find that alot of encoders are multithreaded as are most decent photo editing packages (correct me if i'm wrong here) because video, photo editing/encoding is very processor intensive as is 3D rendering, not much of it can be done with a GPU so software companys produce them to use multiple processors/cores for profesional companys (and independants) that in the past have been able to afford multiprocessor server systems.

    so when it comes to things like gaming on a single thread game the 3GHz single core would be a bit faster then the 2.6GHz dual core, but when it comes to video encoding you technicaly have the power of a 5.2GHz single core as it can accomplish double the operations per second

    i say go for it dude! dual core's the future and multithreading is the imidate future for programming now so you'll be futurproofing yourself, but you'll probably want to upgrade again as soon as AMD bring out 65nm dual core processors
     
  5. easyrider

    Caporegime

    Joined: 24 Dec 2005

    Posts: 39,500

    Location: Autonomy

    dont you already have an x2 3800? or is this not your overclock?

    here
     
  6. Devious

    Mobster

    Joined: 29 Dec 2003

    Posts: 3,730

    Location: UK

    I was running an opty 146 @ 2.95 but now Im running a 165 @ 2.75. Everything to me seems more responsive now. Even doing general browsing and general stuff in windows.
    Having the 146 after a hyperthreaded P4 I noticed a slight jerkyness when having say a few firefox/ie windows opened and say watching an avi. It wasnt much but it still was noticable.

    I do a lot of mapping for HL2 and I can use 2 threads when compiling the maps so that swayed me the most :)
     
  7. Big.Wayne

    Capodecina

    Joined: 11 Sep 2003

    Posts: 14,662

    Location: London

    hehe :)

    A strong selling point there!

    there seems to be two AMD tribes, the first are running a single core, and the second dual cores.

    Both sides have their good reasons for their choice of CPU, my choice was based on the fact that socket939/Single core is nice and mature now (I had Opteron/ASUS 939 for nearly two weeks) whereas dual core is the *next* big thing.

    It appears AMD will be switching platforms this year (socket M2) so I figure that would be a more natural platform to buy into the new dual-core tech, having said that I wont be buying a socket M2 system for at least two years until its settled down and possible changed sockets again, just like AMD did with the first A64 release (first it was socket 754, then quickly changed to 939).

    There seems to be no *KILLER* reason to own dual-core atm, this will change with time. If you got the cash to burn then fair enough, but the extra £100-£200 spent of the dual-core could have better effect spent elsewhere no doubt. . .

    [edit] I suspect alot of dual-core owners are early adopters, the same folk who have owned A64's for years, so they kinda got bored :)
     
  8. Agent WD40

    Hitman

    Joined: 2 Jul 2005

    Posts: 710

    I currently have a 3700SD clocked to 2.8ghz and have ordred a 170 opteron to see the difference.

    I'll let ya know if I think it was worth the move...
     
  9. Duke

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 29 Jun 2003

    Posts: 33,442

    Location: Wiltshire

    I guess it depends on what you need from the cpu. Single core is perfectly fine for the majority of people. Dual core is still very new and has its problems (mainly for gamers), but will be much more mature by the end of the year.
     
  10. Hesky82

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 8 Jan 2005

    Posts: 2,405

    Location: Worcestershire

    thanks a lot for your replies guys!

    easyrider, like i said in the thread thats not my work.

    basically guys I'm trying to see through the dual core hype and work out whether its justified, I mean I still dont use an os that is native to 64 bit instructions, and Im struggling to finds programs I use that will multi thread. when the day comes dual core 64 bit will rule! surely were looking at 4 times the performance over a 32 bit single core, thats just insane! but it still seems like a good year away and by then my dual core 170 will be on sale so I can pop a 4ghz x2 m2 cpu in.

    thanks again :)
     
  11. pabloB

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 19 Oct 2005

    Posts: 1,124

    Location: Chelmsford Essex

    I'm thinking of swapping, what exactly is bad for gamers? I game a lot but I also use a few apps at the same time - like have a DVD on whilst i'm on the net etc etc.
     
  12. easyrider

    Caporegime

    Joined: 24 Dec 2005

    Posts: 39,500

    Location: Autonomy


    Basically there is no hype with dual core.If you do many things at once and work with audio and video encoding,which i do ,I could never go back to single core for my main workstation.

    I have got to used to the speed increase.Its shaved nearly 60% off my encoding times.

    I have had no problem in games either. ;)
     
  13. Duke

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 29 Jun 2003

    Posts: 33,442

    Location: Wiltshire

    Some games won't work with the chip full stop, some need patching / editing of cfg so it runs on a single core, some just have poor fps.

    It will take time for the game manufacturers to program all the extra code needed (apparently it's very not easy to do), but gradually it will overtake single core as the preferred choice.
     
  14. easyrider

    Caporegime

    Joined: 24 Dec 2005

    Posts: 39,500

    Location: Autonomy

    every game i have tried has worked fine .

    The odd game I just set the affinity to one core in task manager and all was dandy.
     
  15. Hesky82

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 8 Jan 2005

    Posts: 2,405

    Location: Worcestershire

    interesting, easyrider what vid/audio creation/editing app do you use? also what game do you play?

    cheers
     
  16. Solouko

    Hitman

    Joined: 12 Aug 2005

    Posts: 598

    Location: North wales near Rhyl

    i'm no expert but i think you'll find AMD intends for the socket M2 (or AM2) to replace 939. 754 was released to get 64 bit cors launched, 939 was for 64-bit and dual channel memory, the socket M2 is 64-bit + dual channel memory + DDR2 memory. it's just the natural evolution, we already know that AMD are keeping all the same processors, they're not going to release anything new. i'm also prediting that the next step will be to switch the cores to 65nm technology which will probably happen quite soon, either justbefore or just after intell release there new corone duo cores as the switch will then bring them in line with intell and both companys will have almost identical specs on there processors (dual core 64-bit 65nm). but unlike intel the 65nm technology will be implimented without a new socket it'll be on M2

    but, i think they'll have to release the 65nm cores on 939 because in order for socket M2 to take off and to superseed 939 the DDR2 latencys will have to come down or you just wont be able to justify the price.

    *dreams of a 5.2GHz athlon X2 on a 939 mobo*